As your child grows up, depending on their needs, they might need equipment to help them learn, move, eat or bathe.
This can mean anything from a specific feeding spoon to a specialised wheelchair.
Your local authority is legally responsible for providing some of this equipment. They should send an occupational therapist to assess your child’s physical needs. If your child requires a wheelchair they will be assessed by your local wheelchair service.
Local authorities can however take time to provide the equipment and it may not be 100% suitable.
Genetic Disorders UK is delighted to have partnered with Newlife Foundation to offer more families affected by genetic conditions the vital support and equipment they need.
Through funds raised, Genetic Disorders UK and Newlife are able to offer essential specialist equipment such as pain relieving beds, wheelchairs, car seats and portable hoists which will make a real and lasting difference to the lives of individual children and their families affected by genetic conditions.
To find out more about the equipment grants programme, or to apply for a grant, visit www.newlifecharity.co.uk/docs11/about/nurse_services.shtml or contact a Newlife Nurse firstname.lastname@example.org 0800 902 0095
The Disability Living Foundation charity provides information on choosing equipment, gives examples of makes and lists recommended suppliers. They don’t sell equipment.
DLF has a warehouse in Paddington, West London, where you can book an appointment with their advisers to see examples and try equipment out.
They will also put you in touch with engineers who will design and make equipment for you if can’t find the right thing for your child.
They can be found here: www.dlf.org.uk
There is also a series of exhibitions called NAIDEX which are like the Motor Show for adult and children’s disability equipment.
Care providers and equipment manufacturers display goods and services. This is a good place to learn what’s available under one roof.
There are exhibitions at the London Excel, NEC Birmingham and Glasgow’s SECC.
Naidex can be found here: www.naidex.co.uk
HERE IS A COMPREHENSIVE LIST OF CHARITIES GIVING GRANTS FOR EQUIPMENT:
This is a list of charities who give grants or loans for equipment. If you come across a similar charity you would recommend or run one yourself, please let us know.
Able Kidz provide specialist equipment, computers and software to children/young adults under 18, or to a school and also fund any extra tuition needs of a child. Grants are not means tested.
The Boparan Trust aims to help children and young people up to the age of 18, throughout the UK, who are disadvantaged either through poverty, disability or life-limiting conditions. They provide grants for equipment such as power wheelchairs, trikes and car seats, as well as funding specialist therapies.
Caudwell Children provides specialist equipment such as car seats, buggies and wheelchairs.
Telephone: 0845 3001348
Cerebra is a charity helping children with neurological conditions. The Cerebra Innovation Centre designs bespoke equipment.
Children Today provides grants for specialised equipment such as wheelchairs, walking frames, tricycles and other mobility aids, as well as multi-sensory equipment and other information technology.
Children’s Hope Foundation provides funding to meet the social and medical needs of children and young people affected by illness, disability or poverty. For example, medical equipment, computers, holidays and days out.
Disability Grants can help you find out about all sorts of grants. They have a section about grants for household items, such as beds.
Disabled Living Foundation has an excellent website called Living Made Easy which has a comprehensive guide to equipment and suppliers.
The charity provides impartial information and advice on anything from incontinence swimwear to wheelchairs but not the aids themselves.
Disabled Living Foundation helpline: 0845 130 9177
Elifar Foundation is a small charity which supports children and young adults with a severe learning difficulty and associated physical disability. It can provide grants for a variety of items including electronic wheelchairs, specialised seating, eating aids, special beds and trikes, hoists, communication devices and sensory equipment.
The Family Fund is the largest independent grant-giving organisation helping low-income families caring for a disabled child.
It is a registered charity covering the whole of the UK and mainly funded by the national governments. It helps pay for equipment and leisure activities.
Handicapped Children’s Action Group works to provide specialist equipment for children, up to the age of 16 with disabilities. Grants are means tested.
Independence at Home provides financial help towards the cost of equipment, home adaptations or other essential items to improve the independence, comfort, safety and quality of life at home of those with a long term illness or disability.
Lifeline4Kids provides support to purchase a range of resources such as communication aids, wheelchairs and specialist computer equipment.
The Lily Foundation runs a grant scheme called Lily’s Helping Hands which is designed to make it easier for families affected by mitochondrial disease to afford specialist items which are not routinely provided by the NHS. For example, adapted trikes, pushchairs and all-terrain buggies.
Mobility Trust provides funding towards powered wheelchairs and scooters for severely disabled children and adults. Grants are only available for equipment that is not available from statutory sources and when the disabled person is unable to purchase for themselves.
MERU is a charity which provides bespoke equipment for children with unique or unusual difficulties. Their in-house advice service will suggest existing equipment or come up with a custom-made alternative.
MyAFK provides mobility equipment not available on the NHS, such as bespoke powered wheelchairs, specialised trikes and walkers, to disabled children and young people up to age 25.
National Blind Childrens Society (NBCS) supports children and young adults with vision impairments through a grants programme providing funding towards items and activities which are in support of the charities vision and where no source of statutory funding will pay for the items or activities necessary.
Newlife Foundation For Disabled Children provides essential equipment and helps families challenge local council decisions when equipment is refused.
The charity was established to help families who feel let down by local authorities so they are used to requests from frustrated families for equipment like beds and wheelchairs. Newlife has an emergency equipment loan service for terminally ill children.
REACT helps families caring for a child with an illness which is life-threatening or has the potential to shorten their lifespan. They can provide grants for mobility equipment; specialist furniture, educational/developmental equipment and medical equipment (where funding is unavailable through the Health Authority or other organisations such as Family Fund).
REMAP provides volunteer engineers to design equipment where nothing exists for a particular problem.
Roald Dahl Marvellous Children’s Charity provides Marvellous Family Grants to help UK families in financial hardship who are caring for a child with a serious illness. Grants of up to £1,000 are available to fund specialist equipment.
Strong Bones offer means tested grants of up to 70% of the cost of disability equipment, manual wheelchairs, smart home technology, supportive seating and trikes for children with bone conditions
Variety the Childrens Charity provides grants for medical and care equipment (like feeding tubes or hoists), for sensory play or mobility equipment.
Whizz-Kidz provide mobility equipment like wheelchairs and bikes if they are not available from the local wheelchair service. The charity also refurbishes old equipment to pass on to other children.